Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) was downgraded by research analysts at BidaskClub from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday.

A number of other brokerages also recently issued reports on SFST. FIG Partners reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $42.00 price target (up from $40.00) on shares of Southern First Bancshares in a report on Wednesday, October 4th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Southern First Bancshares from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, October 6th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded Southern First Bancshares from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 14th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. Southern First Bancshares has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $41.00.

Shares of Southern First Bancshares (SFST) traded up $0.95 during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $41.70. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 32,103 shares, compared to its average volume of 8,482. The company has a current ratio of 1.04, a quick ratio of 1.03 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.36. The company has a market cap of $305.21, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.95 and a beta of 0.74. Southern First Bancshares has a 1-year low of $31.40 and a 1-year high of $43.20.

Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The bank reported $0.55 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.53 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $15.85 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $15.22 million. Southern First Bancshares had a return on equity of 11.10% and a net margin of 21.10%. equities research analysts anticipate that Southern First Bancshares will post 2.03 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, President F Justin Strickland sold 1,250 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $39.00, for a total transaction of $48,750.00. Following the transaction, the president now directly owns 62,889 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,452,671. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CFO Michael D. Dowling sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.29, for a total value of $169,160.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 28,007 shares in the company, valued at $1,184,416.03. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 12.85% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Globeflex Capital L P purchased a new position in Southern First Bancshares during the 2nd quarter worth $112,000. Bank of America Corp DE grew its stake in Southern First Bancshares by 7.9% during the 1st quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 3,080 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $100,000 after purchasing an additional 226 shares during the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC purchased a new stake in Southern First Bancshares during the 3rd quarter valued at about $189,000. Rhumbline Advisers purchased a new stake in Southern First Bancshares during the 2nd quarter valued at about $253,000. Finally, OxFORD Asset Management LLP purchased a new stake in Southern First Bancshares during the 2nd quarter valued at about $312,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 70.12% of the company’s stock.

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About Southern First Bancshares

Southern First Bancshares, Inc is a bank holding company that owns the capital stock of Southern First Bank (the Bank), a South Carolina state bank, and all of the stock of Greenville First Statutory Trust I and II (the Trusts). The Bank is a commercial bank with approximately nine retail offices located in Greenville, Columbia and Charleston, South Carolina.

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